PCOS proposal: Ultrasound Appearance of Post menopausal Ovaries as a Marker of Increased Risk for Endometrial, Breast, and Colorectal Cancer
Postmenopausal women with high levels of circulating estrogens or androgens are at increased risk for developing breast and endometrial cancer (1-3) and may also have altered risk for colon cancer and other tumors (4-6). Recognition that aromatization of androgens to estrogens in peripheral adipose tissue represents the main source of circulating estrogens among postmenopausal women has fostered the development of a unified theory linking obesity to both elevated hormone levels and cancer risk (7). However, the importance of other factors that may directly influence cancer risk by increasing endogenous hormone production has received less attention in epidemiologic studies. In particular, clinical studies have reported that ovarian stromal hyperplasia and endometrial cancer are often identified concurrently, suggesting that ovarian morphology may represent a marker of cancer risk among older women (8). This association may reflect increased production of androgen, the main hormone product of the postmenopausal ovary. To assess the hypothesis that the morphology of postmenopausal ovaries is related to the development of endometrial, breast, and colon cancers, we analyzed transvaginal ultrasound data from the National Cancer Institute-sponsored Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial.
Christine Berg (Division of Cancer Prevention)
Doug Reding (Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation)
James Lacey (Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics)
Mark Sherman (Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics)
Patricia Hartge (Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics)
Saundra Buys (University of Utah)